I recently listened to Paul Flynn’s Megiddo Radio August 14th podcast. His topic was on John MacArthur’s reopening his church in which Mr. Flynn reviewed a John MacArthur interview with Eric Metaxas. This podcast was an emotional response that was heavy on personal opinion. Mr. Flynn does reference Psalm 82 at one point but after reading the psalm I’m not sure how it relates to the topic other than how he said it does. In his podcast he had multiple points that he wanted to address but I will comment only on a few.
- Mr. Flynn’s statement that this is not a political issue, it should only be a spiritual issue. He believes that Dr. MacArthur is making it a political issue by quoting the First Amendment right of freedom of religion. The COVID-19 “pandemic” has been politicized in the U.S., especially by the political Left. Governor Newsom was using COVID-19 as a reason to shutdown churches, assessing fines for meeting, while allowing “peaceful protestors”, casinos and other non-essential meetings to continue without penalty. Newsom was overreaching his authority and it was tyrannical in nature. Dr. MacArthur had expressed his desire to open his church because he wanted to minister to the flock placed under his responsibility. It wasn’t to be defiant to the government. If that is being defiant then the churches in China should not be meeting in secret locations because it is in defiance of the government. In short, it is a spiritual matter because a shepherd wanted to minister to his flock. Politics happened to overlap into situation.
- Mr. Flynn’s issue with Dr. MacArthur’s quoting statistics related to COVID-19 and making an assessment by equating it with giving medical advice. Statistics are what they are. One doesn’t need a medical degree to analyze and comment on medical stats any more than one need to have a criminal justice degree to comment on crime stats. Dr. MacArthur was not giving medical advice because what I would consider medical advice is if he prescribed a regimen for dealing with a sickness. Commenting on available data and making a statement that COVID-19 is not as deadly as continuously asserted by government officials who are not medical experts is not medical advice, its discernment. By your standards, one should not be doing podcasts on theological issues unless one has a seminary degree, which means you would need to stop doing yours until you graduate. If people have flu-like symptoms, most people have enough common sense to refrain from visiting people who have weakened immune systems. Dr. MacArthur was not giving medical advice by quoting medical stats and drawing a conclusion.
- Mr. Flynn appealed to medical experts that he agrees with on the nature of COVID-19. I would contend that there are the same number of experts with the same amount of education and related experience who would state the opposite. There are plenty of doctors who are actively treating patients with COVID who would disagree. This is just a matter of with whom one would agree. This is not a pandemic by the standards put forth by the CDC.
The last point I would like to make is on the sovereignty of God. He has preordained this virus to run its course. God has preordained how many will die from this virus. No amount of maskwearing, hand sanitizing, hand washing, shutdowns, social distancing or neglecting to meet with our brothers and sisters in Christ will stop this virus from reaching that number. I am NOT suggesting that we be cavalier and visit cancer patients while we have flu symptoms, common sense and decency needs to prevail in such instances. What I am saying is that COVID-19 appears not to be as deadly as once perceived so it should not stop churches from meeting for worship and fellowship. If one does not feel safe meeting or has a compromised immune system should stay home.
Mr. Flynn, I appreciate your ministry and I believe you are correct on a lot of topics. I pray that you will be called by a church upon graduation and that you will be a blessing and be blessed by God in your service to your given flock. In this matter, however, in my opinion, you should’ve listened to your own advice by not using the podcast to address this issue.